Taxes, Texas-Style

Texas has to be the only state where they allow a company to collect taxes and then keep the money instead of turning it over to the government:

CBS 11’s I-Team has obtained a study that says Oncor, the giant electric utility company in North Texas, is collecting hundreds of millions of dollars from customers for federal taxes that don’t exist.

“Since 2008, they have collected $500 million for the purpose of paying taxes on their income,” said Randy Moravec, executive director of the Texas Coalition for Affordable Power, a coalition of member cities – including Arlington, Plano and Frisco – that works toward finding the lowest rates for residents.

Asked how much of that money has actually reached the Internal Revenue Services, Moravec said: “None … not a penny.”

Gee, where I’m from that’s called theft. But in Texas, it’s all perfectly legal:

Although Oncor collects for federal taxes, it actually does not owe the IRS anything because its majority owner, Dallas-based Energy Future Holdings, has been operating in the red for years.

“In the state of Texas, it’s perfectly legal for Oncor to do what they’re doing right now,” said state Sen. Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth, who is a critic of the utility company’s collection for federal taxes.


Sen. Davis said there should be a law against charging consumers for taxes that are never levied.

“Unfortunately, rather than moving in that direction, the state is actually trying to move in the opposite direction,” she said, referring to a bill that has already passed the senate and is still pending in the Texas House.

If the bill becomes law, the senator said, “It would remove the Public Utility Commission’s authority to regulate utility companies in this particular arena.”

See, you thought they hated taxes in Texas, right? Nope. Not as long as they’re another angle that can be played in the state’s culture of grift.

Reason #10,981 why I will never, ever live in Texas. Ever. Rick Perry can take his bogus campaign and shove it.


Filed under taxes, Texas

14 responses to “Taxes, Texas-Style

  1. GregH

    But, but, but….Austin is an island of wonderful, cool, artsy-fartsy liberals (in a sea of dumbass right-wing nutjobs)! It’s like Nashville, except with more high-tech yuppies and more old hippies and new age crystal-n-tree huggers.

    • I know, I love Austin. Haven’t been there in ages. And San Antonio is beautiful! Drove around there during Blue Bonnet season, it was spectacular. But as I look to make my exist from Tennessee’s equally-horrific suckitude, I’m afraid blue islands are unappealing. I need look no further than my own town of Nashville to see what happens when you’re an island of blue surrounded by deep red crazy. Our legislative loonz are basically trying to outlaw being blue in a red state.

      • gene108

        I’d have suggested moving to some places in North Carolina – RTP or Asheville – but as long as Republicans control the state government, NC is working hard to make up for lost time in enacting the Republican wish list of things that would make living in a state suck.

        Good luck on figuring out where you want to move to.

  2. democommie

    Well, they’re not really taxes, they’re um, “incentives” for the collectors–to do a better job of collectin’!

    “But as I look to make my exist from Tennessee’s equally-horrific suckitude”

    I’m assuming that should read “exit from Tennessee”. In any case, up here in the “Oh so liebral Northeast”, the sound I hear when I smell the oilg, hrch’s frackin’ in the morning is “Dueling Banjos”. Yup, rednecks* and teabaggists be in them thar hills, here too, also!

    *even though we have to take vitamin D supplements. Most of the redness is from cold and hypertension

    • exist/exit — FREUDIAN SLIP!!! OMG that is HIL-arious.

    • GregH

      Damn, democommie! There goes Plan B. (Plan A-1 was moving from Alabama to Austin,TX, and Plan A-2 was moving from Austin to Nashville to make the homefolks less unhappy we left Bama.) Plan B was the liberal Northeast – maybe Boston. Sounds like we need to go for Plan C – either Canada or Germany. Sheeesh!!!

  3. Sounds like Fedex International.

    I get loads of overseas shipments via USPS, UPS, DHL, and others.

    But only Fedex comes up with charges for Duties and “expediting” my overnight package.

    The problem is that my overnight package took over two weeks to deliver due to Fedex’s expediting services.

    Summat stinks to me in that only Fedex seems to charge for items which when they come through a governmental service do not have duty attached!

  4. Are you really leaving Tenn? Come to Charlottesville, VA. We’re a blue island in a purple (actually blue/red mottled) state. We have crazy reds here, but some hope.

    • I might think about Virginia! I’d rather be blue in a purple state, where I might make a difference, than a deep red one like TN.

      • gene108

        Have you ever thought about Southern New Jersey?

        Much less congested than Northern New Jersey and it’s close to Philadelphia, so you have the ability to hit some nice places to eat/go out.

        Much more suburban than I thought NJ would be, when i moved here and there are still some areas that are “sort of rural*”, with a good many family farms and the like.

        *I say “sort of rural” because, when you 30 minutes from one of the most populated places in the country – though you may have grown up on a farm – you aren’t really rural in the traditional sense.

      • After college I lived in Northern PA — right across the Delaware from New Jersey — gorgeous country up there. I think people are always surprised at how rural NJ really is. Have you ever been to the Pine Barrens? I’ve never been, but I’ve heard about it…

  5. democommie

    Most people who’ve never been to New Jersey think it’s NYC’s parking lot. Parts of the state are just pathetic, but a lot of it’s pretty damned nice.